Have you ever met someone that you had a hard time connecting with but needed the relationship to work?
Many people struggle with these kinds of relationships, myself included.
Each time I find myself asking "How can I have an authentic relationship with this person when I have little in common with them?
The first instinct is to lie. It's easy to make up commonalities and create stories that match up with theirs to build artificial closeness.
But to build a truly authentic relationship, it's important to be honest, or you may find yourself caught in a lie in the future.
So what's the key to an authentic, honest, and successful relationship with someone you don't have much in common with?
The key is finding the parts of their stories that you connect with and focusing on those commonalities.
Here's an example.
Sarah - "I went to a rave once and I had so many drinks and drugs that I don't remember it. But my friend took care of me the entire time and showed me the meaning of true friendship. She really had my back."
Heather (who has never been to a rave and is morally opposed to drugs) - Wow, I have an amazing friend like that too. She took care of me when I had mono in college and collected notes for all my classes."
Sarah and Heather can't connect on the subject of partying, but the deep connection they have with a faithful friend can connect them.
In every interaction we are all seeking connection. Your goal when getting to know others is to focus on the commonalities that connect you.
If you always make this your first priority in communication, you'll find connection with everyone around you.